Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Cape Hotel

Tonight, I'm kicking back at the Cape Hotel in Mamba Point. It's quite nice, even with a loud going-away party at the next table. (The local US Marine Commander is retiring. The other local military commanders - Monrovia Police, UN, US Navy - are sending him off.) I'm not really a guest. I'm buying whatever's cheap on the restaurant menu, so I can access their high-er-speed wireless and listen to the waves against the shore. The food is surprisingly inexpensive for a luxury hotel, and they seem to have no problem letting me sit here for hours. 

This part of Monrovia is filled with expats - the wealthy people are here and at the Mamba Point hotel. The less affluent can stay at St. Teresa's Convent, which is less luxury hotel on the beach, and more "3 hots and a cot". Today, I opened a local bank account and waited around at immigration. Tomorrow, I get a Liberian cell phone. (finally!) I may also meet the Editor of the New Democrat, a local paper. I bought some sandals (essential here), shopped on Camp Johnson Road, and priced out a few other items. The streets are still filled with rubble. When I asked what happened, I was told that combatants used mortars and grenades. I ate a "fried egg", which is a popular egg sandwich here. I saw a dog throw up, I stepped over raw sewage. I rode a pin-pin - if I can, I'll post the video. 

One of my dorm mates (all private rooms in the men's dorm) likes to play angry, thundering sermons day and night. The thick concrete walls keep most of the noise out, but I still hear God's Judgement, like a small mosquito looking for the tenderest spot.

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